Dec. 22, 2011
CLINTON, S.C. -- Presbyterian held Navy without a field goal for an 11-minute stretch spanning halftime and used a 15-1 run to break open a tight game and hand the Navy men's basketball team a 58-42 setback on Thursday night at Templeton Arena.
The loss was Navy's fifth in a row and dropped the Mids to 3-9 overall, while Presbyterian, which owns a win over then-No. 20-ranked Cincinnati, improved to 6-5 on the season.
Navy's offense struggled all night long, connecting on just 16-of-46 (.348) field goal attempts and was just 1-of-15 (.067) from three-point range against Presbyterian's intense defensive pressure. The Midshipmen had 14 turnovers and recorded just four assists on their 16 made field goals.
"We didn't make many baskets. We had one guy that was looking to shoot the ball and that was J.J., and he played pretty well offensively," said Navy head coach Ed DeChellis. "We just didn't follow the gameplan that we had talked about for two days. That is the disappointing part. We weren't mentally in the gameplan."
Navy trailed 17-6 early on as Presbyterian made eight of its first nine shots from the field. Navy battled back on the strength of its bench as Thurgood Wynn (So. / Bethesda, Md.) sparked a rally to trim the lead to 19-14 and then again at 24-20 with 4:33 to play.
But Navy would go scoreless the rest of the half as the Blue Hose went on a 7-0 burst for a 31-20 lead at the break. Presbyterian continued the run, opening the second half with an 8-1 spurt for its largest lead of the game at 39-21 with 14:13 left to play. Navy's first field goal of the half, a jumper by J.J. Avila (So. / McAllen, Texas) came with 13:37 to play and started Navy on a mini-rally.
The Midshipmen, with three freshmen and two sophomores on the floor, used a quick 7-0 run fueled by Avila to cut the PC lead to 41-32 with 9:54 to play on a three-point play by Avila. Navy again would cut the lead to nine at 45-36 on a pair of Brennan Wyatt (So. / Greensboro, N.C.) free throws with 5:42 left to play, but the Midshipmen were outscored 13-6 the rest of the way for the 16-point final margin, 58-42.
Presbyterian would shoot 23-of-45 (.511) from the field and went 5-of-15 (.333) from three-point range and 7-of-12 (.583) from the free throw line. The Blue Hose had 13 turnovers and Navy outrebounded the larger, more-physical Blue Hose squad, 30-25. Navy had 14 offensive rebounds, but could only convert them into 13 second-chance points.
Presbyterian also turned 14 Navy turnovers into 20 points, while Navy turned 13 PC miscues into just six points.
Avila led Navy with 21 points and eight rebounds while going 8-of-18 from the field. No other player had more than five points (Wyatt) or took more than five field goal attempts (Wynn).
"Individually, we have a lot of guys that aren't playing well. This game is a team game played by individuals and when individuals don't shoot the ball well and don't pass and catch well, it's hard to win as a team. We didn't do much right. In saying that, we were down nine with five minutes to play and had a chance to win. We let it slip away again. The carry over from game to game is not where we want it," said DeChellis.
Al'Lonzo Coleman led Presbyterian with 22 points on 9-of-9 shooting with six rebounds.
Navy will be off until Dec. 30, when it hosts Mercer to kick off a season-long three-game homestand, at 7:00 pm at Alumni Hall.
Navy's starting lineup consisted of Jordan Sugars, J.J. Avila, James Loupos, Isaiah Roberts and Jordan Brickman. It was the fourth time that lineup has started this year and first since against Albany on Nov. 25, 2011. The lineup is 0-4 when it starts ... Navy's eight true road games are tied for the 11th most in the country ... Navy fell to 0-2 all-time against Presbyterian and is now 26-6 all-time against the Big South Conference ... Navy's 42 points are the fewest since scoring 40 against Holy Cross on Feb. 15, 2007 ... Navy has held six of its 12 opponents to 59 or fewer points ... Navy has been held to 49 or fewer points in three of the last five games ... Navy hasn't scored over 65 points on the road since the season opener against Longwood ... Navy's one three-pointer was the fewest since having one against Army on Feb. 20, 2010 ... Navy saw a streak of 22 consecutive games of at least three three-pointers end on Thursday night ... Navy's bench scored 18 of its 42 points tonight ... outside of Avila, Navy's starters went 1-of-8 from the field and finished with three points ... J.J. Avila recorded his second straight 20-point game with 21 points and eight rebounds. It marks the first time in his career he has scored at least 20 points in back-to-back games ... over the last two games (vs. Missouri and vs. Presbyterian), Avila is averaging 23.5 ppg and 8.0 rpg while shooting 18-of-31 from the field ... it was his seventh career 20-point game ... Avila has led the team in scoring in six straight games (outright), the second-longest streak (behind Chris Williams' 7 in 2000-01) since the start of the 1987-88 season.
# GO NAVY #